Best Folk Act - 2012
When protests lined the streets of Fullerton in 2011 in the name of Justice for Kelly Thomas, a Santa Fe Springs folksinger made his way down with a guitar, a harmonica and a song. In the heat of summer, Julian Porte strummed furiously, his voice amplified through megaphones as he retold the events surrounding the tragic July beating death at the hands of Fullerton police of a homeless man. "The Ballad of Kelly Thomas" is everything Woody Guthrie would've loved: political, uncompromising, impassioned and definitive. Beyond the ballad, he is also influenced by the Delta blues and country, as his other recorded songs adeptly tap their timeless qualities. The street musician has a studio in East Los Angeles and plays in a side band called the Levitation Room, but as far as Fullerton goes, this land is his land.